This blog gains its name from the book Steele's Answers published in 1912. It began as an effort to blog through that book, posting each of the Questions and Answers in the book in the order in which they appeared. I started this on Dec. 10, 2011. I completed blogging from that book on July 11, 2015. Along the way, I began to also post snippets from Dr. Steele's other writings — and from some other holiness writers of his times. Since then, I have begun adding material from his Bible commentaries. I also re-blog many of the old posts.

Monday, July 31, 2023

Typology and Experience

QUESTION: A lady, relating her experience in a recent issue of "Living Water," says, "Cleansing and the incoming of the Holy Ghost, whereby we experimentally enter Canaan, is not all that we need to insure a victorious march through the land swarming with giants and fenced cities. And some of us have found it out to our cost." Please analyze and classify this experience.

ANSWER: The writer has been led away from the truth of her typology. Thus after crossing the Jordan, typifying, as she thinks, entire sanctification and the fullness of the Holy Spirit, she still finds depravity within her, represented by the imagery of giants and fenced cities. She seems to be mixed in her sacred geography. She has mistaken the passage of the Red Sea and wilderness life for Canaan after Joshua's conquest, regeneration for for perfect cleansing, a mistake not uncommon. Do not state or defend a doctrine by the use of figurative language. This is excellent for theoretical illustration, but fallacious when used for a rational proof. If this good woman found a strong propensity towards sin in her after her supposed entire sanctification, she did not call her blessing by the right name. It was not a complete cleansing.

— From Steele's Answers pp 6, 7. [Emphasis added.]

1 comment:

  1. Whereas I think it would be good to get behind the typology to understand (a.) what the lady meant by "giants and fenced cities" and (b.) what Steele meant by "depravity." He was probably right in sensing that she was experiencing resistance of her own will to the will of God. But, he doesn't really know that for sure. I like his idea that typology should be used for illustration purposes only, not to establish a doctrine.